Home Away From Home: Eleonora Cappa’s Journey

We have been very fortunate to have Eleonora Cappa as our Italian language assistant during Term 2 at Santa Maria College. Coming from a small town near Milan, Eleonora has shared her cultural insights and educational skills with our community. Staying with the Bishop family in Ardross, she has quickly embraced and adapted to life in Australia.

Meet Eleonora!

As a little girl, I always dreamed of visiting Australia. Over time, this dream didn’t fade but became even more persistent in my thoughts, alongside my desire to one day become a teacher. The opportunity given to me by my university at the beginning of 2024 has allowed me to merge my greatest aspirations: to do the work I love in a country that has always fascinated me.

However, two fundamental elements truly made the difference in turning my dream into reality: the Bishop Family, my host family, who made me feel at home from the moment I arrived, and Santa Maria College, which has been a place of continuous discovery and learning for me.

Let me introduce myself: I’m Eleonora Cappa, 26 years old, living in a small town near Milan and Pavia, working as a primary school teacher and a recent graduate in Media Education. Since my arrival in Perth on 9 April, I immediately felt at ease with the Australian way of life. Everything seemed calmer and more peaceful compared to the hectic lifestyle I am used to. The landscape of Perth is simply magnificent. Over these weeks, I’ve explored the city, beaches, parks, and surrounding areas as much as possible, and I can say I’ve fallen in love with everything I’ve seen.

Being hosted by a local family and interacting with students has also given me the opportunity to explore different cultural and traditional aspects. The biggest cultural shock I experienced was dinner time: I never imagined having dinner at 6.00 pm. (In Italy, we are used to eating around 7.30 or 8.00 pm!)

Furthermore, being an only child, it has been a fantastic experience for me to have a host sister and brother (plus Luna and Brontë, two adorable host dogs) with whom I have shared special and unforgettable moments. I will always remember the long weekend spent in Denmark, where we all played Monopoly Australia, ate pie and laughed. I will miss many things, especially being woken up in the morning by Brontë’s tail against my door, eager to see me and wish me “Buongiorno!”.

Being an Italian assistant at Santa Maria College during Term 2 made me rethink how challenging yet stimulating it can be to learn a new language. I have always learned English as a foreign language (with all its difficulties, particularly pronunciation), and initially, it felt strange to help others practice my native language, which I’ve always considered easy and never given a second thought to.

It has been a pleasure for me to assist students and colleagues during lessons, both from a linguistic and cultural perspective. For example, I described some national holidays and traditions, shared photos from my life and my family, and discussed our passion for Italian food, music, and movies.

Learning a new language allows you to experience a different perspective on life. That is what happened to me, and I hope it can happen to the students I’ve been helping these past few months. For those who have the perseverance and willingness to embrace a culture different from their own, I hope they find the same enriching experience as I have.

Eleonora with her host family, the Bishops

I am deeply grateful to everyone at Santa Maria College, especially the teachers from the Language Department, with whom I have had the opportunity to chat, share stories, and discover aspects of their lives. I feel I can consider them not only colleagues but friends.

Reflecting on everything I’ve experienced and imagining what awaits me in the future, I am thankful for every single moment I’ve lived these past months. I am certain I will deeply miss my Australian life. I feel truly fortunate to have found two new places I can call home: Santa Maria College and my amazing host family.

Grazie e ciao a tutti!

Equipping Our Year 10 Students for the Future

Santa Maria College’s Future10 Program empowers Year 10 students with comprehensive guidance for academic and career planning. Through personalised course counselling, resources like the Learn Curriculum Handbook, and interactive events such as the Course Expo, students gain clarity and confidence in their subject choices. The program fosters a collaborative approach involving parents, teachers, and external representatives, ensuring students are well-prepared for their future pathways.

Read More »
the Winter Appeal and Outreach Mass at Santa Maria College.

Term 2 – Empowering Students and Community – Jennifer Oaten

As we conclude another remarkable term at Santa Maria College, we celebrate the myriad achievements and growth of our students. Term 2 was filled with empowering opportunities, from faith-based activities and learning innovations to social awareness projects and community engagements, embodying our Mercy values and commitment to excellence.

Read More »
Scroll to Top